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Matthew 24:37-42: When the Son of Man returns

Posted by adventbiblestudy on August 7, 2012


Matthew 24:37-42 “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. (38) In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. (39) People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes. (40) “Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. (41) Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left. (42) “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.

 

 

Jesus continued praying, relying on God’s Spirit to provide Him with the words His disciples needed most. They had no way of understanding why Jesus’ return would be a day of sorrow. How was Jesus going to explain this to them so they would dedicate their lives to the mission ahead, relying only on the Spirit?

 

Jesus prayed they would understand the parable of the branch, and pray for insight into the details of His return so they could preach His soon coming with total confidence, lead only by God’s Spirit, providing the information required at the exact moment the world will accept it. Jesus wanted them to see how the branch grows in a geometric pattern in all directions. By this they could see how their influence would soon spread throughout the world. As Jesus prayed He could see how the message would be lost. Satan would do all he could to change the plain simple message of the branch into a message about a root. Underground and unseen.

 

As Jesus saw the efforts of His enemy in the last days, another parable come to mind. One that would illustrate the results of their efforts if they and future generations pushed aside the Holy Spirit in favor of their own thoughts and plans.

 

“When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes.”

 

How could they miss this simple illustration? They all knew only eight people out of the entire population of the world, entered the ark. Why did so few out of millions accepted God’s invitation? How many years did they watch Noah building the ark? No one appreciated the hours, days, months and years of preparation that went into the ark. No one believed the warnings. This was the result of loosing their relationship with God, forgetting He is the Creator with the power to give and take away.

 

Jesus was pointing the disciples to Zephaniah “I will sweep away everything from the face of the earth,” says the LORD. “I will sweep away people and animals alike. I will sweep away the birds of the sky and the fish in the sea. I will reduce the wicked to heaps of rubble, and I will wipe humanity from the face of the earth,” says the LORD. (Zephaniah 1:2-3) He wanted them to learn to search scriptures to verify the messages the Spirit will give them to share with the world. They were not to teach from their own concepts or interpretations, only what the Spirit gives them, when He gives it to them. Jesus prayed the world would pay attention to the details of His coming, and not miss the message like those in Noah’s day.

 

Jesus knew so few would be saved from each generation to come. A quick and decisive fall was easy for some, an illustration from the lives of Cain and Able. Thinking along these lines, Jesus added, “”Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left. “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.”

 

Jesus wanted His disciples to see what would happen if they didn’t accept their role in God’s plan for salvation. He wanted some assurance His sacrifice would not be in vain. Jesus wanted His disciples to feel the same way He did. He wanted to save all men, both women. He did not want them sleeping at a time they were needed most in the plan of salvation.

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